ben folds and the nashville symphony

My friend Dave and I went to check out Ben Folds performing with the Nashville Symphony Sunday night at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center. It was my first time in the new concert hall, and my first time listening to the Nashville Symphony, and it was all fantastic.

They kicked off the first third of the concert with some classical selections performed by the Symphony, under the direction of conductor Albert-George Schram... seriously one of the most hilarious and fun to watch conductors I've ever seen.

After a brief intermission Ben Folds joined the orchestra and played about 10 of his own songs, all brilliantly executed with some great orchestrations to accompany. Really fantastic, and Ben blew me away with his piano proficiency. He's a truly talented guy. The symphony sounded equally as great, and as Ben himself said, it was a night of really condensed talent with 90+ individuals who have dedicated their lives to mastering one unique instrument, and the resulting effect was phenomenal.

The audience begged for multiple encores, but were only successful in extracting a very beautiful version of "The Luckiest" from him. It sufficed.

So my first Nashville Symphony experience was great. Thanks to Dave for the ticket!!


lunch with a friend

Yesterday I ate lunch with my good friend Scott. And while Scott and I are about the same age I consider him a person I look up to simply because of the fact he has experienced so many different things in life already, and he has the uncanny ability to speak about anything and everything with a degree of wisdom.

Over the last year Scott sold his car among other things and moved from Nashville to the Czech Republic to pursue a lifelong passion to learn more about that culture and the people. He has spent the year touring Europe, getting ingrained in the Prague lifestyle and taking up a personal street ministry in his spare time. In a lot of ways he personifies the Tim Ferriss "4 Hour Work Week" lifestyle - at least he's the only person I know personally that is coming close to doing that.

What it really comes down to is that he's pursuing that which he's really passionate about in his youth... I respect that, and I want to find a way to do that myself.

Keep tabs on Scott's travels through the Czech Republic at youtube.com/czechscottout.


steph went backpacking, and so did i

Prior to the wonderful road trip without an agenda, I was able to take Steph backpacking the Colorado Rockies... an absolutely wonderful week. I'm in the midst of dissecting the trip via blog here - you're welcome to read and learn about the trip.

a road trip with no agenda

The end of July brought about the completion of a number of key items in the 101 list... about time, it's been stagnant for far too long.

I'm going to claim "Go On A Roadtrip With No Agenda" as completed based on the fact that following our backpacking trip a couple weeks ago Steph and I randomly decided to go to Santa Fe and make the cross country trek back to Nashville the long way. On our journey we made stops as we saw fit - did things exactly the way we wanted to do them. For a full discourse, read here.

Along the way I also knocked off two new States in the Lower 48 that I haven't been to yet - Texas and Oklahoma. This leaves New Jersey, Delaware, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, and New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Maine. Hmm... those are all conveniently located next to each other.


the due date

I'm way off track. I'm over a year into my list, and I haven't done nearly enough items. I calculated out my 1001 due date - technically it's 3/12/2010. That's less than two years away at this point. Ugh.


this is elephant art

What you see here is elephant art. It was painted by an African elephant named Hadari who lives down at the Nashville Zoo. Steph and I saw a gallery of elephant art at the mall around Christmas time and thought they were so neat, so I got her one for Christmas.

Since the winter-time forces the elephants inside for several months, they give the elephants projects to do, like painting. Basically they put an easel in front of them with a bunch of paint cans w/ brushes to choose from. The elephant picks up brush and paints on the canvas, and there you have it... elephant art!

And you ask, why did it take me three months to post about this? I have no idea. I'm sorry.

But it is neat isn't it?


caleb and kristin's house

We finally made it to Caleb and Kristin's house in Wisconsin over Christmas... well, to be precise, over New Year's. They have a great place - a cute little house in small-town Wisconsin. It suits them, and their two cats, quite nicely and I'm glad we finally got to see it.

I took a bunch of film pictures of their house, but for some reason we have none on our digital camera... come on Burns. Oh well - we were there, and it was great.

We rang in the New Year playing Trivial Pursuit and watching 6 hours of 'tornado episodes' on the National Geographic Channel.